The following article was originally published on Let’s Talk Property Management:
Landlords often have a negative reputation as greedy, slumlords, looking to take advantage of their renters. In fact, with cases like those shared by these Reddit users who tell their worst landlord/management story, it’s hard to argue that sentiment.
But are landlords always at fault in a renter relationship gone wrong? For every bad landlord story, I challenge you with a bad renter story.
Here I share some of the top reasons why any renters would drive their landlord or property manager crazy.
20 Times My Renters Drove Me Crazy
- They lie about pets.
- They pay rent late.
- They complain about late fees.
- They want call me with a “plumbing emergency” to unclog their toilet.
- Their “employee reference” sounds a little too much like their “landlord reference” (at least change the phone number!).
- They don’t complete the move-in checklist and then complain when I keep a portion of the security deposit.
- They write a bad reviews on Yelp because I raised the rent to meet the local property tax increase.
- The cops have my phone number on speed dial by now because of the late night parties.
- They let their boyfriend/girlfriend stay there.
- They make me get in the middle of roommate drama.
- They use dish soap in the dishwasher.
- They don’t report the water damage from the aforementioned dishwasher flood.
- They don’t have renter’s insurance.
- They move out without telling me.
- They get a new roommate without telling me.
- They don’t change the air filters.
- They try to pass off the pet stains as “normal wear and tear”.
- They don’t take out the trash and blame the pest infestations on the property.
- They refuse to let me come inside for a routine maintenance inspection.
- They don’t return my phone calls.
Renters play an equal part of the landlord-tenant relationship. It is up to them to make sure they understand their renter responsibilities and follow lease terms.
In turn, it is the a property manager’s or landlord’s responsibility to uphold their end of the relationship by providing a habitable and nice place to live, responding to maintenance requests and following state laws in regards to late fees and notices to entry.
As a housing provider, you can avoid these types annoying renter situations by conducting thorough tenant screening. And carefully going through the lease agreement with every tenant, so the expectation are set for a great landlord-tenant relationship.
Do you have experience with bad or frustrating renters? We’d love to hear your thoughts about what makes a bad tenant in the comments, so renters know what it will take to make their landlords love them.
This article is originally published on LTPM under the title 20 Reasons Why I Hate My Renters.
Rentec’s editorial team chose to republish and share the article on the Rentec Direct Blog because the content illustrates some of the challenges landlords and property managers face when dealing with tenants.
One reader shared that the title, 20 Reasons Why I Hate My Renters, was “off-putting” and even made the reader reconsider supporting our brand (see comments below). The commenter states that, “even when [my renters] do things that really bother me, I know they are my livelihood, my customers. If someone hates their customers, they are in the wrong business.”
I support the idea that renters are a landlord’s and property manager’s customers. And approaching your landlord-tenant relationship with a customer service attitude will help you succeed in your rental business. I’ve even written about how to use Customer Service Skills to Build Better Tenant Relationships.
The landlord-tenant relationship is delicate and often debated in terms of who is the greater evil in a renter relationship gone bad. But Dani (our commenter) raises a good point, that we should never be promoting landlords hating their renters. One of our goals as an educational blog to the rental community is provide solutions for landlords and property manager to do their job better. So while it’s fun to read about and relate to challenges that come with landlording, the real task should be educating and working with our renters on the best ways to avoid breaking lease terms so we don’t get frustrated and can have great landlord-tenant relationships.
Wow, what an off-putting title. I don’t hate my renters. Even when they do things that really bother me, I know they are my livelihood, my customers. If someone hates their customers, they are in the wrong business.
I’m shopping for PM software and came upon your website. I like so much about Rentec, but … this blog post is a turn-off. Wish I’d never seen it. Maybe I’ll try Tenant Cloud and see how that goes first.
Oh no, I am so sorry to hear the title was off-putting. You are 100% correct that customer service means putting up with challenging situations and keeping a positive attitude during those moments. And you are awesome to view your tenants as your customers, a mindset I hope all landlords and property managers hold. We should never promote hate in a landlord-tenant relationship and I apologize for doing so with the original title of this article. Please see the editor’s note we added to the blog and the changes we have made to title. Thank you for voicing your concern.
Sounded rather tongue in cheek. But if you look hard enough you can find offense in anything. I don’t hate my tenants at all, even the highly annoying ones, but got a chuckle out of this list because it’s so relatable.
I have great tenants and the tenants afore mentioned. It was definitely funny! I also learned something from it regarding tenant/landlord relations. But the humor was the best part! LOL
Awesome! Glad you enjoyed it Diana.
My manager put out a letter saying . If we have to Unclog a Drain or toilet there is a $50.00 fee if they feel it caused by the tennant. so most try to fix it themselves or pay the fee. then inspectors found damage in the sewer system and this is why so many clogged pipes and smells, Do you think anyone got a refund? NO. Just a notice of the water being shut off from 9 am until. Indefinitely. Non stop water shutoffs and the grounds are torn up and the smell at night is sickening.
Renters do crazy things to your house and yard. First must-do customization of lease form is to add this: MAKE NO CHANGES WHATSOEVER INSIDE OR OUTSIDE THE PROPERTY, INCLUDING THE YARD, TREES, PLANTS, DRIVEWAY, OUTBUILDINGS, ETC., WITHOUT THE PRIOR WRITTEN CONSENT OF HOMEOWNER. (Things people have done at our house: put dog door in brand-new back door; painted rooms badly/unprofessionally and in dumb colors, in one case painting gorgeous old original wood windowsills with what looked like white shoe polish; left rooms half-painted; put up barnyard-themed borders at top of walls using everlasting superglue-type adhesive; painted paneling; dug huge hole out back to half-sink above-ground pool into … we pointed out to next renters what the stupid previous renters did and they then did the EXACT SAME THING, apparently part of trash culture to do this, plus build pool-encircling scrap lumber thing and let it collapse rotten into a heap before they move); people have cut down a prized plum tree, a beloved sweet olive bush and a cherished heirloom rosebush (they have also given a beautiful weeping willow a bowl haircut); they have trimmed back to nothing our slow-growing hawthorne bushes that weren’t bothering anyone and which had taken 10 years to get any bushiness to them at all, have parked vehicles on grass till they killed said grass, and have taken up nice landscaping bricks and edging and made it disappear. I ain’t even gonna mention pets and nonpaying renters …
Oh goodness; talk about altering the property! You are definitely correct; having those addendums in the lease and explaining to tenants exactly what is/is not acceptable when it comes to landscaping alterations is vital. This protects your property and ensures that tenants don’t find themselves making unfortunate alterations out of ignorance of what is allowable.